David Trame is an Italian teacher of English. His poetry collection Re-emerging
is published as an email book by www.gattopublishing.com. He has been
writing exclusively in English since 1993.
Pictures From The Home Ground
With calm insistence, leaning on her stick
she has just stepped into the bedroom
and opened the wardrobe, asking me for the umpteenth time
which of his clothes to keep and which to give away
and I have joined the rite, no matter
how many times I've already told her
while sensing you behind shaking your head
in the glow of a half-smile.
And to and fro we have swished hangers on the rail
pressing coats on one side and then on the other,
she raising her stick, pointing, saying -this -and this,
glad to sort out, re-establish, decide.
As in the morning when slowly
up and down the stairs, aged knees and stick
so very carefully striving
to give balance to an aged body,
we sorted out old and new keys in all the locks
trying them again and again
brandishing each at a time in our hand
and losing one in a pocket or a drawer
and finding it again, while sunlight
cast strips of leaves and breeze
on the brown-red floor tiles
and strewed our words like bees.
Now we are looking at old photographs after dinner
and the trees are quietly looking at us, outside
there's still light and the evening is long,
long as the grass of the aftertime.
We are gazing at small faces in black and white
in sunlit yards, by sunlit walls
on the same road grit and dust that is still now on this skin,
in the evening stare that lasts.
My way back home is on the outskirts, a path stolen
along the railroad tracks and then a row of trees
skirting the highway tarmac after a stone balustrade
where cars whoosh past and make you feel
lost and lonely.
The city horizon far off dotting the sky with belfries and domes.
But it's the fastest way back where you hear your thoughts
loudly hammer, and your aloneness stinging and strong,
your workday account of how things have gone,
your own voice inside, your only judge and host,
thoughts you can't and don't want to avoid.
While seasons pass.
And the sun disc there on your forehead
with a stretch of horizon neat and empty,
the stare of a line like a simple blade,
a stretch down at the bottom, just water and a sandbar,
the fist full with the light of the moment
that is now the end of a clear autumn day,
slanting sun already settling its long shadows,
dry leaves full of earth's browns and yellows,
a bright gust for your bare self.
Pebbles and Dirt
Gravel and dust at sunrise.
An ochre and rosy stretch in the street,
road-works, slices of tarmac scraped off.
I can smell naked earth -strange,
right here for the first time, on my way to work.
And I am at once that same child
feeling welcomed in his countryside
in years when tarmac was still rare,
only reserved to some far off highway.
"My heart under my feet", mine were eager to taste
sun-baked earth, dry mud and roots cracking out,
the air filled with a barely heard hum,
the soil's loom promising suns,
nothing planned, nothing known
but a world announced by sunrise
like eyes seeping inward.
And now this waft, just pebbles and dirt,
while I cross a patch of broken asphalt
and the past that on its passing
lands at my feet, with a fast grip and fast wings,
on what it has always been.
Back to Front.